The Browns made their debut on Hard Knocks last week, and a star was born. Sort of.
One of the more memorable moments of Episode 1 — an emotional roller coaster that framed where Cleveland’s been and where it could be headed — centered on backup defensive end and, apparently, part-time financial advisor Carl Nassib.
Nassib, a third-year player out of Penn State, was captured handing out financial advice to his teammates in the defensive line meeting room, ranging from investments to the interest returns.
Nassib, who graduated with a degree in Biology in December 2015, offered an animated lecture and used a dry-erase whiteboard for further demonstration. Some of his linemates seemed fascinated; others unfazed.
While it was by all accounts an entertaining and endearing moment, Nassib admits he was embarrassed by his colorful language caught on camera and received a phone from his grandmother because of it.
“I didn't know I swore that much,” said Nassib, who put the episode on in his training camp hotel room as background noise.
Indeed, Nassib has always been a big personality inside the Browns’ locker room, a dynamic showcased by Hard Knocks via his impromptu Finance 101 class and an unrequited crush on Taylor Swift (Nassib attended her concert at FirstEnergy Stadium last month).
On the field, the rangy defender figures to be part of a rotation that includes Myles Garrett and Emmanuel Ogbah. In 2017, he started 12 of 16 games last season, recording five pass breakups and three sacks along the way.
Now entering his second year with defensive coordinator Gregg Williams, Nassib said he’s as strong as he’s ever been and a bit heavier on the scale than years past. That should bode well for him as he competes for playing time in a crowded and talented room that recently added rookie Chad Thomas out of Miami and signed free agent and former Bengal Chris Smith this past spring.
“I’m excited to keep improving and working with the guys. Everybody is doing a good job,” he said. “Last year, I played more three technique than I have ever had in my career. I wanted to be able to do that better this year.”
Like the rest of the Browns defense, he stands to make a jump having another season in the same system with the same coaches (Williams and Co. were hired in January 2017).
“This is actually only the first or second time that I have had the same defensive coordinator two years in a row,” he said, referencing back to a coaching change with the Nittany Lions. “When you don’t have to re-install the playbook, you just play fast and know your assignments like the back of your hand. I think that it is going to give us a huge advantage. We can even improve on last year.”
While only time will tell how Nassib’s role develops this fall, it’s clear he’ll be prepared to pass out financial advice if needed.
“This offseason I did a lot of research about finances and stuff like that because I did not study that in college,” he said. “I felt like I wanted to share that with my teammates and the younger guys, and help them out because it helped me out a lot.”